AL QAEDA LEADER SUPPORT THE SYRIAN UPRISING
AL QAEDA LEADER SUPPORT THE SYRIAN
The new leader of Al Qaeda Ayman Al Zawahiri, has called on Muslims around the world, in a footage distribute through the web on Saturday 02/11/2012, to support rebels in Syria who are seeking to overthrow Bashar Assad. The statement is the most explicit attempt yet by the terrorist group to intervene in the ongoing Syrian conflict (see – SYRIAN 2011 UNREST).
In the eight-minute video titled Onwards, Lions of Syria, posted on extremist websites, Zawahiri calls on Muslims in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey to join the uprising against Assad’s “pernicious, cancerous regime”, and warned Syrian rebels not to rely on the west for help the monitoring SITE Intelligence Group said. .
“Wounded Syria still bleeds day after day while the butcher, son of the butcher Bashar bin Hafiz [Hafez al-Assad], is not deterred to stop,” Zawahiri said. “But the resistance of our people in Syria despite all the pain, sacrifice and bloodshed escalates and grows.”
Al-Qaida, seriously weakened by the loss of its leader Osama Bin Laden last year, has played no significant role in the ongoing unrest associated with the Arab spring. However, the group has made persistent attempts to indirectly influence those opposing autocratic regimes across the Middle East, and to intervene directly. Late last year senior militants linked to the group travelled from Afghanistan to Libya in an effort to boost recruitment in the chaotic aftermath of the fall of Muammar Gaddafi.
The Assad regime has repeatedly said Islamic militants are behind the violence in Syria, a claim rejected by opposition groups who say it is designed to discredit them in the eyes of the international community. But the recent suicide car bomb attacks, according to Western intelligence officials, were attributed to Al Qaeda in Iraq and carried out by a specific order of Ayman Al Zawahiri (see – SYRIAN DILEMA).
Zawahiri said: “If we want freedom, we must be liberated from this regime. If we want justice, we must retaliate against this regime. Continue your revolt and anger, don’t accept anything else apart from independent, respectful governments.”
The revolts of the Arab spring have posed a strategic problem for Al Qaeda, which has always adamantly rejected democracy and nationalism as western inventions that weaken and divide the Islamic world.
In July, Zawahiri urged Syrian protesters to direct their movement also against Washington and Israel, denouncing the US as insincere in showing solidarity with them (see – Footage 07.27.11).
This month another video featuring Zawahiri appeared on Islamist forums, announcing that the Somali militant group al-Shabaab was joining its ranks, in an apparent attempt to boost morale and sharpen the threat to Western targets.
* Related topics ;
- 12/2011 -ANSAR AL-JIHAD IN SINAI CLAIMED RESPONSIBILITY FOR ATTACKS
- 11/2011 -THE ISLAMIC DECADE IN THE MIDDLE EAST
- 10/2011 -ZAWAHIRI IN A NEW FOOTAGE WARNS AGAINST NATO
- 04/2011 -JIHADISTS ON THE REBEL’S FRONT LINE IN LIBYA